What is blepharitis and how can it be treated?

What is blepharitis and how can it be treated?

Blepharitis is a common eye infection that causes red, irritated, itchy eyelids along with the development of dandruff-like “scales” on the eyelashes. Irregular oil production, bacteria, or skin conditions, like rosacea and scalp dandruff, can cause the infection to appear. Even though Blepharitis is very uncomfortable, it does not cause permanent damage to your vision and it is not contagious. There are many symptoms that materialize with this infection, including redness, watery eyes, a gritty sensation, and crusting of the eyelids. Some people may only experience minor irritation and itching, while others can experience more severe symptoms, such as misdirected eyelashes, inflammation of other eye tissue, and blurry vision.

However, if left untreated, can be a pre-cursor for dry-eye and meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD). A minor case of blepharitis can be treated with home remedies, like warm compressions or a gentle eyelid scrub. If the disease is linked to an underlying condition, such as allergies or dandruff, treating that condition will help blepharitis go away naturally. If nothing seems to be working, there is a device that is offered called BelphEX that can help more serious symptoms, when the home remedies fail. BelphEX stands for blepharoexfoliation, which is a quick 5-minute in-office procedure where the doctor exfoliates and cleans the eyelid with a patented handheld device, removing bacterial debris and other irritants.

The patient needs to have the procedure repeated in 4-6 month intervals to make sure the disease doesn’t return. The patient is given numbing drops so they are comfortable during the procedure. BelphEX can save patients from spending hundreds of dollars on prescription drops and artificial tears.

Call Heart of Texas Eye Institute today to get further information!


What is Presbyopia?

What Is Presbyopia (pres·by·o·pi·a)?

 

Presbyopia is a very common eye condition that impacts most all adults. The condition causes your eyes lose the ability to change focus and see objects that are close up. If you have to stretch your arms out in order to read a book or your phone, you may have presbyopia. This conditions starts to become noticeable around the age of 50. Here at Heart of Texas Eye Institute located in Dripping Springs, we can educate and inform you of the causes and signs of presbyopia!

 

The eye has flexible, soft lenses that can easily change shape, allowing the eyes to focus on objects that are both near and far away. The loss of flexibility and the lens becoming more rigid begins to happen around the age of 40. The eyes can’t change shape as easily as they once did, so it becomes much more difficult to see things up close, like your phone or a dinner menu.

 

Presbyopia is sometimes confused with farsightedness (hyperopia) but they are different. Farsightedness, which has genetic tendencies and can be present at birth, occurs when the natural shape of your eyeball causes light rays to bend incorrectly when they enter your eye. Presbyopia occurs when the lenses of your eyes lose flexibility as you age. This can be confusing because the results are much the same – difficulty seeing things up close without correction – but, again, the causes are very different. There is no cure for presbyopia, but it can be easily corrected.

 

Presbyopia is treated by our refractive surgeons at Heart of Texas Eye Institute. We use the KAMRA Inlay with LASIK. The KAMRA Inlay is smaller and thinner than a contact lens. The inlay is shaped like a mini-ring with an opening, or pinhole, in the center, allowing only focused light to enter the eye. The KAMRA inlay is placed in one eye, allowing patients to see up close. Distance vision is maintained in both eyes. By combining KAMRA and LASIK, patients can correct near vision problems and for most patients, eliminate the need for reading glasses.

 

If you would like to know more about treating your presbyopia or the KAMRA Inlay, call 512-213-2220 for an appointment with one of our highly trained surgeons here at Heart of Texas Eye Institute!


Prevent Diabetic Eye Disease!

Keep Your Eyes Healthy To Prevent Diabetic Eye Disease (Diabetic Retinopathy)

The most common eye disease among diabetics is diabetic retinopathy. This eye disease occurs when blood vessels in the retina are damaged. This usually occurs in both eyes. The most common symptom of diabetic retinopathy is slight changes in vision. Over time, the condition can worsen, causing greater vision loss. The best way to prevent diabetic retinopathy from developing is to have an annual dilated eye exam from Heart of Texas Eye Institue!

4 stages of diabetic retinopathy:

Stage 1 – Mild – Non-proliferative Retinopathy

At this stage, small blood vessels in the retina might experience small areas of balloon-like swelling called microaneurysms. Minor to no vision loss is noticeable.

Stage 2 – Moderate – Non-proliferative Retinopathy

As the disease progresses, some of the blood vessels that the retina depends on for nourishment are blocked. Vision loss has become apparent.

Stage 3 – Severe – Non-proliferative Retinopathy

In this stage, additional blood vessels become blocked, depriving the retina of blood supply. Once this occurs, the retina sends signals to grow new blood vessels.

Stage 4 – Proliferative Retinopathy

This is the most advanced stage of the disease. Additional blood vessels have grown to nourish the retina, but these new fragile blood vessels have grown along the retina and in the surface of the vitreous gel. This does not cause vision loss alone, but if these vessels leak, severe vision loss or even blindness can occur.

Tips to prevent diabetic retinopathy:
• Control blood glucose levels
• Don’t smoke
• Keep blood pressure stable
• Check cholesterol levels
• Eat a healthy diet
• Move for at least 30 minutes a day

If you would like to know more about diabetic retinopathy, or would like to schedule appointment with one of our Heart of Texas Eye Institute specialists, call 512-213-2220 Don’t delay – early detection can prevent vision loss!


Glaucoma: The Silent Thief of Sight

Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness in the United States. Glaucoma is a condition where the optic nerve becomes damaged and can result in blindness. This is a serious eye condition that shows no early warning signs or symptoms. Typically, intraocular pressure (IOP), the pressure in the eye, is the usual cause of glaucoma.

A patient with early glaucoma will notice no difference in their vision, which is why initial vision loss is not noticed. As the condition progresses, blind spots can develop in a patient’s peripheral vision. If left untreated, glaucoma can lead to complete blindness within a patient.

 

Risk Factors of Glaucoma:

  • Age
  • Intraocular Pressure (IOP)
  • Family history of glaucoma
  • African- or Spanish-American ancestry
  • Prior eye injury
  • Less central corneal thickness
  • Farsightedness or nearsightedness
  • Systemic health problems such as steroid medication, migraines or poor circulation

Types of Glaucoma

 

There are two types of glaucoma – Narrow-Angle Glaucoma and Open-Angle Glaucoma.

 

Narrow-Angle Glaucoma – this form of glaucoma can occur suddenly, when the iris (the colored potion of the eye) is pushed or pulled forward. This movement can cause internal eye structures to be blocked. When this occurs, the eye’s internal pressure may spike, causing damage to the optic nerve. Symptoms of narrow-angle glaucoma include eye pain, headaches, halos around lights, dilated pupils, vision loss, red eyes, nausea and vomiting.

 

Open-Angle Glaucoma – this form of glaucoma displays no signs or symptoms. Most patients that have open-angle glaucoma feel fine and do not notice any changes in their vision. In open-angle glaucoma, the angle in your eye where the iris meets the cornea is as wide and open as it should be, but the eye’s drainage canals become clogged over time, causing an increase in internal eye pressure and subsequent damage to the optic nerve.

 

Treatments for Glaucoma

 

There are several different treatment options available to help manage glaucoma. The most common treatments include laser treatment, surgery, and medications. Each of these treatments will help lower the IOP and control the glaucoma. Treatment will not be able to restore any vision that has been lost, but the treatments provided at Boling Vision Center can help maintain the vision you do have left. Your Boling Vision Center eye doctor will determine the best procedure for the health of your eyes.

 

Glaucoma can be managed with an early diagnosis. Once a treatment plan is developed, patients can enjoy the same activities without their eye health negatively impacting their daily life.

 

Schedule An Eye Exam Today

 

If you have a family history of glaucoma, contact the glaucoma specialists at Heart of Texas Eye Institute. We will schedule a dilated eye exam and measure the pressure in your eyes to determine if you have glaucoma. The doctors at Heart of Texas Eye Institute will educate you on the preventative measures of healthy eyes.

 

Call 512-213-2220 today to schedule your preventative eye exam! We look forward to seeing you soon.


Q: Am I A Good Candidate For LASIK?

So, you’ve made the decision to inquire about LASIK. You’re tired of glasses and contacts with the yearly expense that always seems to grow year after year. Bravo to you for making the first step. Now, there are a million questions that dance around in your head. But, the most looming question you ask yourself is “how do I know if I’m a good candidate?”

The majority of people who meet the age and general health requirements and have a stable vision prescription may very well qualify as candidates LASIK. Below is a list of requirements you need to ask yourself prior to having LASIK consultation and surgery.

You must be over the age of 18 to be a LASIK candidate.

You are 21 years of age or older, you may be a candidate for Laser eye surgery (treat moderate to severe nearsightedness or mild to moderate farsightedness. Both with or without astigmatism.)

You have “Healthy Eyes”, meaning free from eye diseases or any corneal abnormalities, including scarring or infections.

You can lay flat without difficulty or any discomfort.

Your eye can stay fixed and stare at a particular spot for 2 minutes.

Willing to not wear contacts for 2-4 weeks prior to LASIK consultation and procedure.

Willing to sign a consent form for procedure

If you’ve answered yes to these questions, you’re ready to schedule a LASIK consultation, where you will learn more about the procedure.

To set up a consultation, give us a call at 512-213-2220 or fill out the form below to get in touch with us and learn more about LASIK.

Request A Consultation

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